Saturday, November 2, 2013

So, yeah, I ran another race.

Today was my second attempt at the Silver Falls Trail Half Marathon ( geez, that's a mouthful). It was my third half ( technically my fourth since I bailed out of my Portland Marathon attempt at about the halfway point. Injury and stupid are not good combos).

 As I look over today's race, I could pretty much just recycle last year's report, since it reads a lot like today's results. I came out one minute faster than last year. Of course, the conditions were about 9 bazillion times worse than last year, so my one minute faster was a much stronger showing than 2012.  Plus, I'm still nursing a cranky knee (if by 'nursing' you mean still running races and not resting enough.) I was undertrained and not sufficiently prepared for today. At all. But, I learned I can bust out a not awful half marathon in horrendous weather on pretty just my base conditioning. So, I got that goin' for me. Which is nice.

I have a December 5k in the books, but after that I think I'll take a holiday break to focus on some cycling and strength training before getting back to base building for next year's races.


Thursday, May 9, 2013

Running updates

Last time I wrote about running I listed a variety of races I was considering for this year. I've completed some and committed to a few more, so here's the latest:

Shamrock 8k: done. 42:15/8:30 pace
Badger Mountain Challenge 15k: done. 1:50-ish. Lots of hills and trail traffic. But mostly hills.
Vancouver USA Half Marathon: confirmed entry, training in progress. Race day is June 16.
Ragnar NW Passage team relay in July. A summer relay is pretty much a given at this point.
Sept. 12- turn 40. No avoiding it, so...
Portland Marathon. Confirmed entry, October 6. First full marathon.
Silver Falls Trail Half Marathon  will happen if I get in before it fills up.

I'm running a good bit more lately, 20-25 miles per week and building. I've also been getting more structured in my training, adding specific workouts to my week in addition to the increasing mileage. Hill days, tempo runs, long runs, and recovery runs are filling my weeks. And I dig it. My training pace is getting quicker and my endurance is building also. Hopefully it will pay off at the half in June. I have a couple of race goals, but I'm not ready to share them just yet.

'Til next time!

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Oooohhhh FFFFuuuuuddge

There are times that life just reaches up and five finger death punches you right in the business. Today was one of those times. I found out today that my longshot best option for a teaching position at my current school next year had dematerialized ( a word I just made up). That really (REALLY) sucked to hear. Now, I'm not going all weepy here; I knew all along that this was a very real possibility, since I was hired on a one year contract. Some positive signs had pointed at a good chance to continue next year, but as these things go, it just didn't work out. I am hugely disappointed because, a. I work in a great building with a fantastic team of teachers and administrators. This year has been a dream assignment in that regard. and b. I love the kids. I have a great class and the other kids in the school are great (and, I might add, pretty fond of me, too).

Now, as I said, I'm bummed; but, I'm not disillusioned or 'beat.' I have worked hard this year and built my craft as a teacher with great support and guidance. I have also proven myself in many ways both to myself and to others, building (what I think to be) a pretty good reputation as a teacher and team member. I know I am meant to be a teacher and feel strongly the right opportunity will present itself in due time. In all of this I have appreciated the transparency and straightforwardness my administrators have had with me. All along I've been treated fairly, honestly, and with dignity and respect as both a professional and human person. For those who know my employment past, you know what a huge deal this is in my book. The folks at my school have been top notch people, for sure.

what does this have to do with running, you ask? Everything. One of the reasons I have been able to keep my center through a lot of uncertainty this year has been piling on the miles (more or less). Running has become a great outlet for me and a time I can really sort through my thoughts on the day. All day today, I managed a glassy calm, positive exterior while inside I was a roiling, twisted, and sad mess; I knew I'd have my chance to lose my shit and it would be on my run tonight, when I was all by myself. Surprisingly, you can still gut out a six miler while choking back intermittent tears (yes, I am man enough to admit this day has elicited tears). By the time that run was over though, I had processed  my feelings and returned to my normal pragmatic self, ready to seek out my next opportunity/challenge. It helps that I have 8 weeks of the current school year left to keep my focus and plenty of ground to cover with my kiddos to stay busy. Luckily, I also have a marathon to train for, giving me lots of running time to think and keep myself centered.

I admit this turned into a bit of a ramble, but hey, you're being entertained for free. You can't expect it to all be gold.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Oh, hello...

So I was talking to a friend of mine the other day and he reminded me that I have a blog. Which is to say...HOLYCRAPHAVEIREALLYNOTPOSTEDINTWOMONTHS?????

I feel I should explain myself and why I've been slacking off on my responsibilities as the owner/author America's third worst running blog. It's a really simple explanation:

I have a job.

This job takes lots of my time and lots of my already taxed brainspace. For those who forgot/don't know/accidentally landed on this blog by some twist of fate (and to you, I truly apologize. Especially if you've read the archive posts...) I'm teaching 3rd grade. This requires planning, adjusting, re-planning, and LOTS of classroom cleaning, which leaves precious little time for running, let alone blogging about my laughable running exploits.

Sadly noted, my last entry was the race report on my debut half marathon (Spoiler alert:I didn't win. I know; I'm as shocked as you are).  After that I ran consistently up until Christmas, when I got an awesome case of food poisoning (still haven't set foot inside Trader Joe's since). It took a couple weeks, literally, to feel back to normal during which time running wasn't happening. Just this last week or so  I've gotten my feet back under me and consistently been running again. Yes, it hurts, thanks for asking. I'm renewed and committed though (read: I just paid money for a race entry), and am building my mileage back up to the 20+ per week range, with a target of 35-40 miles per week by Spring. I have a running plan for the year, so here are my excuses to drone on in this very spot about mile splits and people faster than me:

3/17: Shamrock Run 8K, Portland (confirmed)
3/31 Badger Mountain Challenge 15K trail race (tentative)
6/16 Vancouver (USA) half marathon (not officially registered yet, but I'm doing it for certain)
7/19-20 RAGNAR Northwest Passage Relay (signed up months ago)
...something will pop up through here, I'm sure...
11/2 Silver Falls trail half marathon (oh, sweet revenge)
1/26-ish/2014 Orcas Island 25K (wish list race)

It's not a big list, and that big July-November gap is too large, so something will have to pop up in there...

Should be fun!